A big honkin' pile of stupid today.
Challenging the New Atheists:
The new atheists allege that faith in God is the result of irrational thinking and that a rational person would not believe in God. . . .See Antony Flew Considers God...Sort Of, Antony Flew's Bogus Book, etc. It's a fallacy of argument from authority, using a poor authority, and Flew never even became a Christian.
However, Christianity is not founded on “blind faith” but faith built upon evidence, and there are good reasons that make belief in God a reasonable conclusion. One significant individual who has come to believe in the existence of God is Antony Flew. Flew was this generation’s greatest atheist philosopher. However, Flew, through philosophical reasoning, came to believe in God.
Flew states that he wrestled with three key, major scientific questions. First, how did the laws of nature come to be? Second, how did life come from non-life? Third, how did the universe come into existence? The naturalists’ answers, which are heavily dependent on Darwin’s theory, were unsatisfactory.Darwin's theory!? <facepalm>
The new atheists allege that science and faith are at war. Therefore real scientists must be atheists, for science clearly proves God does not exist. . . .<facep...> ah... Let's just push on.
Richard Dawkins believes Darwin’s theory answers the design argument. However, recent discoveries reveal the shortcomings of Darwin’s theory. Darwin’s theory fails to explain the cause of the universe. It also fails to present evidence that that life came from non-life. There is also the lack of transitional forms in the fossil record, and there is no mechanism for macro-evolutionary change.
The new atheist movement asserts that religion is dangerous, for it is the source of much of the conflict in the world today. Many assert that religions, especially Christianity, teach intolerance and discrimination. To build their case, however, the new atheists unfortunately attack misrepresentations of religions, especially Christianity.
For example, in The God Delusion, Richard Dawkins states, “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser, a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.” What Dawkins displays is his superficial understanding of the Bible. Certainly no Christian believes in a God as described by Dawkins.
Zukeran achieves fractal stupidity!
Another error is the misuse of labels. New atheists apply the term “fundamentalist” to Evangelical Christians as well as fundamentalist Muslims, creating the illusion the two are equivalent in their teachings. . . .Then why do so many Christians, including most religious institutions, seem incapable of this "careful reading"?
A careful reading of the New Testament quickly reveals that violence goes against the nature of Christ’s teachings who taught His disciples to love their enemies and pray for those who persecute them (Mt. 5:38-48). Application of the true teachings of Christ would lead to a peaceful society.
A significant point that the new atheists do not mention is the destructive consequences of atheist philosophies. Nietzsche predicted that the death of God would lead to a moral relativism which would result in blood in the streets. Communism has lead to the death of millions in the twentieth century. Millions were put to death under the regimes of Marx, Pol Pot, and Mao Tse Tung.Marx's regime? Howls of derisive laughter, Bruce!
According to Zukeran, in his 19th century book, The Golden Bough, James Fraser
taught that religion developed through a natural evolutionary process which began first with animism, a belief in spirits in nature. The worship of nature spirits eventually lead to polytheism. Eventually, amongst all the gods, one was viewed as the most dominant. Eventually this dominant god alone was worshipped and monotheism developed. This was known as the evolutionary theory of religion. New atheists believe eventually man’s need for God will end and atheism will be the end of this evolutionary development. Unfortunately, the new atheists once again are not presenting a new theory but reiterating an old theory which has been shown to be flawed. . . .According to Wikipedia, however,
[But] Dr. Wilhelm Schmidt in his four-thousand-page treatise, The Origin and Growth of Religion. . . . revealed that monotheism is the oldest of religions. The development of religion was discovered to have gone in the opposite direction of the evolutionary theory. All cultures began with a belief in a heavenly father, and this monotheistic faith eventually degenerates to polytheism and then animism.
By the 1950s, the hypothesis of primitive ethical monotheism was rejected by the academic establishment, so its proponents of Schmidt's "Vienna school" rephrased it to the effect that while ancient cultures may not have known "true monotheism", they at least show evidence for "original theism" (Ur-Theismus, as opposed to non-theistic animism), with a concept of Hochgott ("High God", as opposed to Eingott "Single God"). Christian apologetics in the light of this have moved away from postulating a "memory of revelation" in pre-Christian religions, replacing it with an "inkling of redemption" or virtuous paganism unconsciously anticipating monotheism " (Urmonotheismus).